Beechwood superintendent apologizes after COVID-19 comparison

Mike Stacy

Beechwood Independent Schools

The superintendent of a Northern Kentucky school district apologized Sunday after downplaying COVID-19 deaths.

Mike Stacy, superintendent of Beechwood Independent Schools, tweeted about his excitement for the new school year while comparing Kentucky’s number of deaths from coronavirus to how many people died in the Holocaust.

“Two weeks from today, I’ll be getting ready for the 1st day of AP Euro. Can’t wait to get started, especially with the events of 2020,” he began, according to a screenshot from WKRC’s Alexa Helwig. “790 total Covid deaths in KY during 2020….you’d have to times that by 7,600 to get the 6 million Jews that died in death camps during WWII.”

The tweet led to backlash from Twitter users and an apology from the school official.

“What a weird perspective. I know you’re talking AP Euro, but not one child at @beechwood_tiger should have to be in danger of dying to get an education,” Greg Given tweeted at Stacy.

“As a social studies teacher you should know better,” Christina Trosper replied. “As a human being you should know better. Disgusting.”

Others called for the superintendent to delete his tweet, which he promptly did.

Along with apologizing to some people who tweeted to him, Stacy issued a statement on Twitter Sunday night.

“Earlier today, I posted a comment on social media that could have been interpreted as insensitive, inconsiderate and completely out of line,” he wrote. “My intention was to encourage my students, over the next fourteen days, to think about how history and how different moments throughout history have been dire and painful. However, I did a terrible job of conveying this thought. I am sincerely apologetic for the thoughtlessness of my words.”

He added he has “learned – and will continue to learn – from this incident to be more thoughtful on social media.”

As of Sunday, 773 people have died in Kentucky from the coronavirus. There have been 34,982 total cases in the state, Gov. Andy Beshear reported.

The school district will resume classes Aug. 19 and will have four different learning options, which include in-person and remote classes, according to Cincinnati.com.

Stacy has been the superintendent at the school district since 2015 and is also a teacher at its high school, Cincinnati.com reported.

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Mike Stunson covers real-time news for McClatchy. He is a 2011 Western Kentucky University graduate who has previously worked at the Paducah Sun and Madisonville Messenger as a sports reporter and the Lexington Herald-Leader as a breaking news reporter.
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